Check Yourself

August 23, 2011 § Leave a comment

Before I moved out of my apartment in Columbia, I went online to the USPS website to change my address so that my mail could be forwarded to my parents’ house. It cost a dollar, but what’s a dollar when it comes to the convenience of your mail arriving in the right place?

However, two weeks after I moved home, I still wasn’t getting any of my magazines. I had to resort to going to the public library for reading material. [Just kidding, I love the library.] It took a phone conversation with somebody down there to get the problem fixed. Before my other roommates moved out of the apartment at the end of July, they told me that I had a languishing stack of mail, which I asked B to collect. I finally got my hands on my stray mail last week when I revisited Mizzou.

Among my magazines were three flat cardboard envelopes. Unexpected snail mail is usually exciting, but as I examined the envelopes, I realized that they were anything but usual. For starters, each envelope was addressed from me, from my most recent Columbia address. The first two envelopes were addressed to people in New York I had never heard of, and they were returned for various reasons. The third envelope was addressed from myself to myself. If that’s not crazy talk, I don’t know what is.

Inside each envelope was a check made out to the intended recipient of the envelope. The amount on each check was more than $2000, which definitely caught my attention. With $2380.02 made out to my name, my mild curiosity glistened with greed. Sucks for the two people who sent back the envelopes!

Two of the checks were labeled “Chevron Federal Credit Union” [I don’t have the third one anymore because I used it to write down directions to a friend’s house when I couldn’t find paper in B’s room], so I googled it and found two websites, one of which was very professional-looking and one of which looked like a pop-up ad. Both seemed to be based in Oakland, Ca., which was the address listed on the checks. B said I should call Chevron, but at the time, I didn’t want to deal with figuring out which website the checks came from, and I wasn’t sure what I was going to ask anyway. [“Did you mail me a check from my own address?? Please explain because I’d like to cash in immediately.”] Besides, we were getting ready to go out for dinner, so I left the conundrum for later.

I figured I would just take the check to my bank at home and ask them what was up with it, but B suggested that I ask my friend who works at a bank in Cali. Good idea! So yesterday I contacted KW over Gchat and explained the situation. I think she was actually at work at the time, ha ha. Being the inquisitive and determined person she is, KW actually called Chevron and asked them about the check after I sent her a photo of it. The verdict:

Well that’s just too bad. We still couldn’t understand why someone would take the time and resources to mail fake checks from my address. I mean, each of those envelopes cost almost $6 to send! That’s a lot of money! KW said that if someone wanted to scam me, they would send instructions along with the checks, but I didn’t get any. Maybe they forgot. I don’t know. I guess these fake checks are only good for scrap paper now.


Amazingly, I got another one of these in the mail on Saturday. Because the post office finally started forwarding my mail correctly, it arrived at my house after being rejected from the intended recipient.

KW said that I should report this but I have no idea to whom I can tell this and how they would even deal with it.


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